It’s the emotion — the feeling you give your audience that they will take home.

This realization hit me over the weekend as I attended by brother in law’s wedding. My wife gave a speech so filled with emotion it brought her, and a half-dozen others to tears. Listening to her, it dawned on me that it wasn’t the words the bride, groom and entire audience would remember, but rather how her speech made them feel.

I spoke shortly thereafter, and mine was all about humor. …

Work-life balance retired in 2007 with the launch of the original iPhone. Virtually overnight, the world became connected at all hours and every day, in ways that weren’t previously possible. It’s only gotten worse since then.

Today, “family time” too often includes obsessively checking e-mail, texts and voicemails, replying to calls that were missed during the day or just fretting about what might hit the inbox next. It’s unhealthy, and worse — it robs your brain of the ability to focus on creative and strategic goals.

I’ll freely admit that I’m a poster-child of this hyper-connected world — with a…

How Dunkin’ Donuts just won the morning

On the way in to work early this morning, I stopped by Dunkin’ Donuts for breakfast. I do this regularly without event, but this time was a bit different. Their credit card machine had just stopped working, and I couldn’t track down any cash.

This same event has played out at other fast food places, and the typical response I get is “sorry, but our machine is broken. Come back next time.” What a great way to inflict your troubles on a customer, one who is less likely to choose you next time.

Choose to live by your schedule, not the inbox

Is your weekend really free if you find a crisis in the inbox Saturday morning that you can’t address until Monday morning? … You had time but you didn’t have attention, so the time had no practical value.
Tim Ferris, The 4-Hour Workweek

It’s almost hard to picture now, but just 10 years ago there were virtually no phones that had e-mail capability. If you wanted to view or respond to e-mail, it had to happen when you returned to your computer and found an internet connection.

At the time, it felt like being chained. But looking back, it was…

“I think we’re having fun. I think our customers really like our products. And we’re always trying to do better.”
-Steve Jobs

Steve Jobs chose not to live by many of the rules that govern our daily lives. What he did live by is a handful of principles that defined his life and accomplishments. Arguably there are several more, but these are the ones I’d like to focus on here.

  • Do what you love
  • Be run by ideas, not hierarchy
  • Make insanely great products
  • Put a dent in the universe

If you look carefully, you’ll see that the latter point…

The story of my first website sale

While cleaning my office this morning, I happened across last years’ 20 Rising Stars Under 40 article. Skimming it again, I couldn’t help but laugh.

It’s a question I hear on an almost daily basis— should I create a responsive design or develop a separate mobile experience for my website? As CEO of a company that launched our own successful mobile website generator, you might think my preference would be for a mobile-only, “external” site.

In fact, it’s the exact opposite. I believe so strongly that a responsive design is the way to go that we voluntarily shuttered our mobile platform to new members six months ago. …

I love April Fools Day. The number of people who somehow forget that everything is a joke that day is staggering, and a lot of fun. Plus the faux ideas from pranking masters like ThinkGeek can be brilliant.

This time around, the one that stood out to me was the Google+ “Hoff” filter, which purports to add pictures of David Hasselhoff automatically to pictures tagged with a hashtag.

Fast forward to two days later, and it hit me that it would have been great to throw one of all of us in the office with “the Hoff” up on Facebook with the text “Wow, it works on Facebook too! #Hoffsome.”

Done on April 1st, it might have even been funny. Done today, and people will wonder what got slipped into my coffee this morning. Timing is everything!

“Reading, after a certain age, diverts the mind too much from its creative pursuits. Any man who reads too much and uses his own brain too little falls into lazy habits of thinking.”
- Albert Einstein

I started my first bona fide business as a sophomore in college. I’d never held a real job, had very little experience interacting with customers and literally no experience making sales. Unsurprisingly, I was taken advantage of on a regular basis by unscrupulous individuals, eager to exploit the work of a driven, but clearly naive college student like me.

This led to the…

Time is a non-renewable resource, spend it on what will have the biggest impact

As entrepreneurs, we often have the habit of saying “yes” to things out of enthusiasm for the idea, the merit of the person bringing the concept to us, or just because we’re anxious to dive into something new. It’s in our DNA.

It’s also often not the best approach.

The highly successful generally are so because of their ability to execute, seeing endeavors through to completion and success. The more items you focus on, the harder it is to see any one through to completion, and the more likely you are to end up with a multitude of “almost finished” work.

1. Take on fewer…

Jeff Jahn

6X founder/co-founder, Chief Nerd @ DynamiX. Pushing the envelope on what can be achieved through technology.

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